Come out, ye continentallers!
We’re going for to go
To fight the red-coat enemy,
Who’re plaguy “cute,” you know.
Now, shoulder whoop!—eyes
right and dress—
Front!—Davis, wipe your nose—
Port whoop!—that’s slick—now, carry whoop!
Mike Jones, turn out your toes.
your sort, my boys:
Now, quick time!—march!—that’s right;
Just so we’d poke the enemy,
If they were but in sight.
whoop!—stop laughing, Nick—
By platoons, wheel!—halt—dress!
Hold up your muzzles on the left;
No talking, more or less.
Bill Sneezer, keep your canteen
We’re going for to travel;
“Captain, I wants to halt a bit,
My shoe is full of gravel.”
Ho—strike up music—for’ard
Now point your toes, Bob Rogers;
See! yonder are the red-coat men—
Let fly upon ’em, sogers.
This song was written in the early part of the revolutionary war to burlesque the meeting of the country militia, and afterwards became very popular. Although Brown had not much voice, he managed to give a correct and exceedingly laughable expression to the old song.
“That may be all true enough of some of the country militia,” said Robinson, “but in our village, there was no such foolery. Regulars—and British ones at that—couldn’t have gone through a better training, or a better rill. One of the British officers at Saratoga said that the New England militia were equal to regulars; and as far as marching up to cannons’ mouths and driving back dragoons goes, I think they were, myself. You see, for a long time previous to the battle of Lexington, we had trainings all around the country, and some of our officers were men who had seen some hard service in the old French War. Why, just look at the men that Ethan Allen and Arnold led against Ticonderoga, as strong a place as was ever fortified in the northern states. There was not a bolder or better conducted enterprise in the whole war.”
“Were either of you in the expedition against Ticonderoga?” enquired Hand, wishing to learn the particulars of that affair.
“Ay,” replied a little old man, who had quit eating and fallen asleep during Davenport’s narrative, and had only wakened up at the sound of the drum and fife, playing “Come out, ye Continentallers.” “I was with Ethan Allen. I was one of the Green Mountain Boys, that did the thing.”
“Then perhaps you can tell us something about it,” said Kinnison, “and about the quarrel between Allen and Arnold. I never heard the facts of the case, but from what I know of the two men, I feel sure Arnold was wrong.”